April 3, 2009 12:34 AM

Ray of hope in bad job numbers: crisis may be flattening out

Employers shed 663,000 jobs in March, the fifth consecutive month of huge job losses, pushing total U.S. jobs lost in this recession above 5 million, as the unemployment rate ticked up four-tenths of a percentage point to 8.5 percent, the Labor Department reported Friday.

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